Board talks trash

Published 10:34 pm Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Improvements need to be made to some of the county’s trash-collection sites, county leaders earlier this week told officials with the company tasked with handling that trash.
Overflowing cardboard recycling containers, the lack of housekeeping at the county’s trash collection sites, broken equipment and the lack of trained attendants were among the complaints members of the Beaufort County Board of Commissioners presented to officials with Republic Services Inc. at a meeting of the board Monday night.
The county contracts with Republic Services to handle the county’s garbage and recycling at several sites throughout Beaufort County.
Four officials with Republic Services met with county leaders Monday to talk about issues related to trash collection and recycling in Beaufort County.
County leaders are scheduled early next year to begin reviewing the county’s contract with Republic Services for trash collection.
Of particular concern to county leaders is the lack of space and maintenance at a trash collection site off the Gray Road in Chocowinity, county officials have said.
That lack of space is causing traffic problems for residents using it, and, often, that results in garbage overflowing the containers there, Republic Services representatives were told.
“The site has to be made bigger for the standpoint of handling what you need to handle,” said Commissioner Hood Richardson. “The county may need to acquire some additional land.”
In the meantime, the company must improve conditions at the Chocowinity site, according to Commissioner Jay McRoy.
“You have to make the site flow better,” McRoy told company representatives.
McRoy said the addition of a second trash compactor at the site hasn’t helped with traffic delays because that compactor is often out of service.
At 274 tons of garbage per month, the Chocowinity site receives the second-highest volume of trash of any of the county’s trash collection sites, following only a site off of River Road, which receives 313 tons of trash per month, the commissioners were told.
On weekends, about 740 cars, or about 41 cars per hour, visit the site.
Despite the addition of a new trash compactor and two additional days of service of the containers at the site, problems remain, county leaders have said.
They were told that the narrow road at the site results in only one car at a time being able to access the containers there, and safety issues preclude the use of more than one trash compactor at a time.
Republic Services officials said that an engineer will be asked to evaluate the site to determine what can be done to make traffic flow better there.
Company officials also promised to add a second container for recyclable materials to the Chocowinity site later this year.
The improvements to the Chocowinity site were among a list of improvements planned at several trash collection sites throughout the county including the addition of more trash collection containers, improvements to roads accessing the sites and increased frequency of collections at several sites.